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Rousuck's Review: "Love's Labour's Lost" by Chesapeake Shakespeare Company

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Photo by Brandon W. Vernon
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It's Thursday, and theater critic J. Wynn Rousuck is back with another of her weekly reviews of the Maryland regional stage. Today, she joins Tom to spotlight Chesapeake Shakespeare Company's new production of the Bard's Love's Labour's Lost, staged outdoors  "In the Ruins" at the Patapsco Female Institute (PFI) Historic Park in Ellicott City.

In this pun-filled romantic comedy penned by William Shakespeare in the mid-1590s, King Ferdinand of Navarre (played by Jonathan Jacobs) and three courtiers -- Berowne (Jose Guzman), Longaville (J.C. Payne), and Dumanin (Alexander Kafarakis) -- agree to avoid the distractions of women for three years while they study and pray. Their high-minded plans are derailed when the beautiful Princess of France (played by Lauren Davis) and her three ladies -- Rosaline (Elana Michelle), Maria (Micaela Mannix), and Katherine (Hilary Morrow) -- arrive on a diplomatic mission, and the men soon become love-struck fools.  For their part, the women conspire to confound the men's amorous ambitions, but the play ends as the death of the Princess's father puts all the romancing on hold for a year.

Directed by Erin Bone Steele, the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company production of Love's Labour's Lost continues at the PFI Historic Park in Ellicott City through Sunday, July 28th.  For more information, click here.

J. Wynn Rousuck has been reviewing theater for WYPR's Midday (and previously, Maryland Morning) since 2007. Prior to that, she was the theater critic of The Baltimore Sun, where she reviewed more than 3,000 plays over the course of 23 years. Her feature coverage for The Sun included a comprehensive series chronicling the development of the Tony Award-winning musical, “Hairspray.” Judy got her start at The Cleveland Press and at Cleveland’s fine arts radio station, WCLV. Her broadcasting experience also includes a year as an on-air theater critic for Maryland Public Television.
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